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College Football Random Thoughts From Around the Country: CHAOS COMETH

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Chaos got an early start to the weekend on Friday and continued into early Sunday morning.

Zombies Walk Sydney City Streets Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images

Chaos landed on the College Football shores early in the week. We should have known something was amiss when one-loss South Alabama easily toppled giant-killer Troy on Wednesday evening.

By the time Friday rolled around, it was full throttle Chaos as #2 Clemson lost to unranked Syracuse followed by #8 Washington State being dominated by unranked Cal. On Saturday, there was more of the same with #10 Auburn blowing a big lead to LSU. The weekend ended with #5 Washington getting shut down by unranked Arizona State in the early hours of Sunday morning.

  1. Alabama - W
  2. Clemson - L
  3. Penn State - W
  4. Georgia - W
  5. Washington - L
  6. TCU - W
  7. Wisconsin - W
  8. Washington State - L
  9. Ohio State - W
  10. Auburn - L

Thanks to the obscure rarely-used Rule RK-21002.329Cbxii buried deep in the NCAA rule book, Howard University has clinched a spot in the CFB Playoff: Howard > UNLV > Idaho > South Alabama > Troy > LSU > Syracuse > Clemson (who Joey Galloway kept at #1 all season based on the confounding fact that they won the championship last year).

Clemson v Syracuse
Syracuse Orange is the new orange.
Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

FRIDAY THE 13TH

Syracuse 27 Clemson 24 - Clemsoning is back! It is nice to know some traditions don’t die. Despite a noticeable limp, QB Kelly Bryant stayed in the game until a hard hit knocked him out of the game with a concussion late in the first half. Despite what Clemson fans will tell you, this is no excuse for a conceived playoff team to lose this kind of game. At the time of the injury, Syracuse was up 17-14. Furthermore, Bryant doesn’t play defense. The Orange outgained the Tigers 440 to 317. Clemson was 2-11 on third down conversions and 0-1 on fourth down. In contrast, ‘Cuse was 8-19 and 2-2. The Tigers had more penalties yards, 11-119, than rushing yards, 25-113.

Cal 37 Washington State 3 - This shouldn’t have been a shocker. We knew this was coming. This is who Wazzu is. They win some games. They upset someone late at night whole nobody is watching, make headlines, and then faceplant in the spotlight. Luke Falk, who some had as a fringe Heisman candidate, threw five interceptions, was sacked NINE times, and lost one of two fumbles of which was returned for a score. He had more INTs on this night than 57 FBS teams have had all season. Cal was led by LB Jordan Kunaszyk (who?), who had 11 tackles (5 solo), 2.5 sacks, an interception and a forced fumble.

RAT POISON!

Someone was eating the rat poison this weekend and it wasn’t Alabama.

LSU 27 Auburn 23 - Auburn was having their way with LSU in the first half, jumping out to a 20-0 lead on their first four possessions. Kerryon Johnson had 123 first half rushing yards. Even the AU mascot will feeling a little cocky. While Gustavo began prep work for Arkansas, Coach O pulled out his collection of voodoo dolls that an old swamp soothsayer had given him in exchange for a strand of hair and a drop of blood of his first born.

The Bayou Bengals came back with a pair of touchdowns due in most part to Russell Gage. The WR took a jet sweep for 70 yards setting up the first score and made a diving catch for a 14 yard TD to bring the score to a manageable 23-14. In the second half, both offenses stalled. Kerryon Johnson managed only 33 yards on the ground and Jarrett Stidham lost another Heisman as Auburn put up zeroes. It was a punting exposition until D.J. Chark broke up the monotony with a 75 yard punt return for a TD. Two fourth quarter field goals put LSU up for good. Auburn still has not won at LSU since 1999.

This is a Win-Win for Bama fans: Auburn loses and Ed Orgeron will not be fired. Give him an extension Alleva!

Arizona State 13 Washington 7 - The Huskies were also chowing down on the rat poison this past week. Some bozos had them #3 behind Alabama and Clempson. With a NFL prospect of Jake Browning at QB, all they had to do was put just one more touchdown up on the board against a team who had not held an opponent to under 30 points in their last 11 games. The Sun Devils gained a 13-0 halftime advantage and UW did not score until 5:32 to go. From that point, ASU went on a time-eater of a drive of 11 plays for 58 yards that drained the clock down to zeroes. Amazingly, this game had no turnovers and only four penalties. All-American kick returner Dante Pettis was denied any chance for a big play, returning 3 punts for 7 yards. (In case you are wondering, Blake Barnett did not play and has not since Week 1. He is stuck behind a junior who will not be going pro.)

Washington lost at Arizona State for the seventh straight time and hasn't won in Tempe since 2001.

ELIMINATED!

Southern Cal 28 Utah 27 - In a way, I admire Kyle Whittingham for attempting a two-point conversion with 42 seconds to play, but it was reckless and it has knocked them out of any hope for a playoff birth and probably a PAC-12 title. His Utes blew a 21-7 halftime lead and made Sam Darnold look better than he was. I suppose he does not trust his team in overtime. With their second straight loss, the Two Utes are eliminated from any prayer of making the playoff.

SEC

Alabama 41 Arkansas 9 - Is there any need for Damien Harris to go to the NFL Combine next spring? The junior RB had 125 yards and two first quarter TDs on only 9 carries. That is 13.9 yards per carry. Jonah Williams was named SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week, his second of the season. He graded out at a team-high 92 percent in 56 snaps at left tackle and did not miss an assignment. The true sophomore had four knockdown blocks and did not surrender a sack or quarterback hurry.

South Carolina 15 Tennessee 9 - The Vols changed quarterbacks and got the same old result. When a team cannot get the running game established (John Kelly 16-58 yds, 0 TD), it is up to a QB to jump start an offense. And therein laid the problem. Jarrett Guarantano was 11 of 18 passing but had only 133 yards and was sacked 7 times. He also fumbled twice though neither were lost. His rushing numbers were 17 attempts for -2 yards.

The Gamecocks were not much better, but good enough. Freshman kicker Parker White, who had been pretty bad leading up to this game, connected on all three field goals.

Tennessee had one three final shots for the W from the 2-yard line thanks to a generous clock official who managed to help the Vols squeeze in three plays in the final 9 seconds. However, all three passes fell harmlessly to Earth to end the game.

Tennessee has not scored a touchdown in their last 10 quarters of play.

Texas A&M 19 Florida 17 - The Aggies weren’t flashy but the defense was tough and the offense did just enough to get in field goal range for four three-pointers. The winning field goal came after UF inexplicably punted the ball to Christian Kirk and he returned it 43 yards to the Gators 39. TAMU had a paltry 263 total yards. The Gators had 371, but Feleipe Franks threw a pair of costly picks, the second of which came with 52 ticks left on the clock. Florida (3-3) is in danger of a three game losing streak with the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party on deck.

Mississippi State 35 BYU 10 - The Mormons have an awful team of biblical proportions. I guess Bronco Mendenhall knew what he was doing when he skipped town for Virginia. BYU is averaging 11.4 ppg and staring a 1-11 season in the face. MSU’s Nick Fitzgerald had two touchdowns each via passing and throwing but also had a pair of interceptions. The Bullies had 546 total yards to BYU's 176.

SEC Defense Optional:

Ole Miss 57 Vanderbilt 35 - These two teams combined for 1,020 yards and 92 points. Big numbers may be exciting to the ADD set but it will never win championships. OM had another big number: 11 penalties for 79 yards. A.J. Brown continues to hone his skills (8 rec, 174 yds, 2 TD) before he probation-transfers to Bama.

Georgia 53 Missouri 28 - This game started out looking like another potential Chaos victim after the two teams went toe-to-toe knotting it up at 21-21 in the second quarter. From there, UGA was able to ground-and-pound for 370 yards and another 320 through the air. Jake Fromm finally got back to passing the ball after four straight games of single-digit completions. But let’s get real. This is Mizzou defense is dreadful. They are bottom five in scoring defense (42.2 ppg) and total defense (498.7 ypg).

GRAB BAG

Oklahoma 29 Texas 24 - The Red River Irrelevancy came down to the the fourth quarter after Oklahoma had blown a 20-point lead. Unlike Auburn, the Sooners were able to hang on for the win.
NC State 35 Pitt 17 - Since losing to South Carolina in Week 1, the Wolfpack have reeled off 6 straight wins and lead the ACC, Atlantic. If they win the next two (at Notre Dame and vs Clemson), we may have to adopt them.
Miami 25 Georgia Tech 24 - In South Florida, they are calling it a “miracle” when a 28-yard catch on a tipped fourth-down ball kept Miami's drive alive and set up a 24-yard field goal with 4 seconds left. The real miracle is that Mark Richt convinced any good players to go to this bandwagon-jumping school. You may recall it wasn’t that long ago when ‘Canes could barely get a couple thousand to show up for games. Now they are saying the ‘U’ is back and so are the fair-weather fans.
Michigan 27 Indiana 20 (OT) - Another Struggle Win for Harbaugh. Only six more games and he can take over the Chicago Bears.

Git outta mah way!

LOLville

Boston College 45 Louisville 42 - Remember the Cardinals? Whatever happened to them? Before this game, the most BC had scored all season was 28 against Central Michigan.

Tulsa 45 Houston 17 - Remember Houston?

BIGGEST NAME OF THE WEEK

Texas WR Lil'Jordan Humphrey (yes that is his official birth name) who is 6-foot-4-inches, 222 pounds.

WACKIEST GAME OF THE (SUN)DAY

The Zips won 14-13.

THE DESMOND HOWARD/DANNY KANELL JINX

The ESPN blabbermouth picked Stanford, Georgia, Wisconsin, Miami, and Okie State to win their conferences. One down, one dying, three to go.

  • Okie State - Dead Men Walking.
  • Georgia - We may have to wait til December.
  • Wisconsin - We may have to wait til December. They play nobody, PAWWWL.
  • Miami - sneaks by Georgia Tech at home at the buzzer.
tiny football

BAMA STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE

The Crimson Tide foes.

  • FSU (2-3) The ‘Noles outlasted Duke 17-10.
  • Colorado State (5-2) erased an 11-point deficit to sneak by Nevada 44-42. The Rams lead the MWC Mountain Division at 3-0.
  • Fresno (4-2) shuts out New Mexico 38-0. The Bulldogs lead the MWC West Division at 3-0.
  • Mercer (4-3) beat Chattanooga.

ADOPT-A-TEAM

  • San Diego State (6-1) Well, it was fun while it lasted. Boise (4-2) brought their A-game, holding Aztecs RB Rashaad Penny to 53 yards on 21 carries. The Smurfs won 31-14.

FEUDIN’ COUSINS

One of the great things about college football is that on any given Saturday, David can whoop Goliath... and then turn around and knocked in the jaw by George McFly. Ten days after upsetting LSU on the Tigers’ homecoming, Troy (4-2) returned home to host one-win South Alabama (2-4) and laid a big ol’ egg by the score of 19-8. The Trojans lost three fumbles and threw a pick and did not get on the board until 2 minutes remained in the game. The Jags still have an uphill climb to become bowl-eligible.

THAT ANNOYING STEP-BROTHER

UAB won again and stand at 4-2. With Charlotte (0-7), UTEP (0-7), and Rice (1-5) left on the schedule, the Blazers are basically a lock for a bowl game. Too bad their “fans” don’t care.

RS-Patriot

SALUTE TO OUR TROOPS

  • Navy (5-1) The Midshipmen fell to Memphis 30-27. Navy QB had an uncharacteristically error-prone game losing three fumbles and throwing two interceptions. It doesn’t get easier with #20 UCF coming to town.
  • Army (5-2) - Dang, look at Army! With a 28-27 win over Eastern Michigan, the Black Knights are one win away from going to back-to-back bowl games for the first time since 1984-1985 and only the second time in the program’s history. Temple (3-4) is next on the schedule.
  • Air Force (2-4) - The Falcons slipped by UNLV 40-34. Nevada is next.
boxers

ELIMINATED

NEW: Auburn, Utah, Georgia Tech.

All non-Power 5 teams.

Arizona
Arizona State
Arkansas
Baylor
Boston College
BYU
Cal
Colorado
Duke
Florida
Florida State
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Iowa State
Kansas
Kansas State
Kentucky
Louisville
LSU
Maryland
Michigan State
Minnesota
Mississippi State
Mizzou
Nebraska
North Carolina
Northwestern
Oregon
Oregon State
Pitt
Purdue
Rutgers
South Carolina
Stanford
Syracuse
Tennessee
Tejas
Texas A&M
Texas Tech
UCLA
Vanderbilt
Virginia
Virginia Tech
Wake Forest
West Virginia

AND... Ole Miss

THE CONTENDERS

Let’s veer away from what the knuckleheads say (Joey and Jesse, I’m looking at you) and focus on the potential Playoff Committee selections. Ever since their creation, the CFPC has been surprisingly adept at their task of bringing together the four best teams. They don’t buy into hype and take many factors into consideration (No, Penn State. Winning on the last play of the game at Iowa is not impressive, despite what ESPN says. And, no, just because you think you got snubbed last year does not mean you will get a make-up call this year).

The first College Football Playoff Rankings will be issued on Nick Saban’s birthday, October 31. Selection Day will be Sunday, December 3.

A way WAY WAY too early look at the College Football Playoff (CFP) picture:

Might this be the year a two-loss team gets into the playoff?

  • ACC - Clemson can still get into the playoffs but will need to look good the rest of the way and get a little help. Miami is the sole undefeated team in the ACC. However, they have only played five games in seven weeks. NC State (6-1) plays Notre Dame and Clemson back-to-back. UVa is a surprising 5-1 and could wreak some havoc but unlikely to be a candidate.
  • Big Ten - It’s about to get real in the B1G East. Penn State and Michigan face off on Saturday while Ohio State rests. In the West, it’s Wisconsin thanks to their lame schedule. None of the Badgers opponents played to date have a winning record. Iowa (4-2) and Michigan (5-1) are the only opponents that fill that qualification and they both travel to Madison. One loss and UW is likely out. PSU’s best win to date is still Iowa.
  • Big 12 - TCU is suddenly the leader in the clubhouse. Okie needs to win out. Although West Virginia and Texas will have a say, the first two weeks of November might wrap this thing up.
  • PAC-12 - No undefeated teams remain in this woe begotten conference. The Washington schools have to play each other and Stanford. Southern Cal still has an outside shot. They will need to get past their next two games (vs Utah and at Notre Dame) and win the Conference Championship game.
  • SEC - Alabama is looking pretty strong. UGA could get in as well if they are still undefeated (Fla, SC, @Aub, UK, @GT) by the time the calendar flips to December.
  • Indies - With the emergence of UGA comes the reappearance of Notre Dame back in the spotlight. The Irish have quietly gone 5-1. But that may be snuffed out on Saturday when they host Southern Cal followed by NC State the next week. They also have Miami and Stanford in November.

Eight teams remain undefeated: Alabama 7-0, Georgia 7-0, Penn State 6-0, TCU 6-0, Wisconsin 6-0, Miami 5-0, South Florida 6-0, UCF 5-0. Among the P5 teams listed above, only Bama and UGA have a bye week remaining. After seven weeks, only 14 P5 teams have one loss.

LET’S GO BOWLING

Charlotte and UTEP are both 0-7 and have the dubious distinction of being eliminated from bowl eligibility (lame 5-7 exceptions aside). At 0-6, Baylor is one loss away from joining them.

15 teams now have six or more wins. 63 slots remain.

Kristi Malzahn

Krazy Kristi's "SHUT UP!" of the Week goes to the NCAA for letting North Carolina get away with decades of sham classes available to athletes only. It should be quite disarming for you to know that spineless SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey was the panel's chief hearing officer in this hearing. Fellow jellyfish Mark Emmert makes millions of dollars a year and does not contribute a ****ing thing to college athletics.

Kristi wonders why the NCAA doesn’t take a page from the NFL and get tougher with their punishment stances. The NCAA is not a court of law.

Next up on the Get-Away-With-It docket: Baylor.

STATS OF THE DAY

  • Bama WR Henry Ruggs has four receptions on the season. All four have gone for touchdowns.
  • Army was 0 for 5 passing, but still won.
Gump 4 Heisman

HEISMAN HYPE

With the exception of TWO YEARS, the Heisman Trophy voting is basically a hype award. Last year was yet another exhibit of the voters falling in love with someone way too early. That being the case, we'll bring you "Who Will Win" and "Who Should Win".

Who Will Win -

  • Saquon Barkley - (RB Penn State) Unless he screws up somewhere down the road, this race is over.
  • Bryce Love (RB Stanford) Bryce is finally getting some love but he is not getting the hype needed to win this trophy. He may need for Barkley to get shut down in the next couple of games (a distinct possibility considering the opposition). Although the CFP Committee is not wont to do make-up calls, the Heisman voters are not above it. They may vote for Love to make up for poor little Toby Gerhart Christian McCaffrey and the whiny cries that the West Coast doesn’t get any attention. Remember, there is no logic or facts involved in this process.
  • Baker Mayfield (QB Oklahoma) That Iowa State hangover is still lingering.
  • Lamar Jackson (QB Louisville) Is he still playing? He’ll make a fine back-up WR in the NFL someday.

Who Should Win -

  • TBH, no one player is standing out. Unlike all the hyperreactive bozos that do have votes, I will wait to see how the rest of the season plays out. We will find out how good Barkley is in the next three weeks.
Ohio State v Nebraska
Why were starters like Jalyn Holmes still in the Ohio State game with a late 42 point lead, Urban?
Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images

THE SICK REPORT

  • Alabama redshirt sophomore Brandon Kennedy, who has been working as the second-team center, underwent ankle surgery last week. It is unlikely he returns before bowl season.
  • Tennessee PK Aaron Medley has been downgraded to doubtful Saturday vs. Alabama. He has been battling an undisclosed illness.
  • Auburn safety Tray Matthews pulled a hamstring in the loss to LSU. Center Casey Dunn went down with an undisclosed injury during the first half. Left guard Mike Horton (ankle) did not play.
  • Arky QB Austin Allen will likely be out a few more weeks.
  • South Carolina starting tailback Rico Dowdle fractured a bone in his leg in Saturday's win against Tennessee. SC seems jinxed!
  • I think it is pretty clear that Urban Meyer was trying to run up the score on Saturday, because he had many starters still on the field late in the blowout win over Nebraska. It cost him as running back Mike Weber, defensive lineman Jalyn Holmes, and left tackle Jamarco Jones were all helped off the field after the game was effectively over.
  • Adding injury to insult, the Washington Huskies lost a pair of starters, left tackle Trey Adams and cornerback Jordan Miller, to season-ending injuries.
  • Auburn might be in trouble. The university hired a law firm to investigate academic fraud within the football program as reported by ESPN. But don’t get your hopes up too much. The NCAA has been slapping a lot of wrists lately (UNC, Miami). And don’t forget a certain quarterback who got away with being shopped around to the highest bidder.
  • In other news, James Franklin is still a jerk.
Black and White TV

Below are just the highlights for games this weekend. If you want to know the game time of Tulsa-UConn, you should probably look elsewhere. @Or maybe some kind soul will add it in comments.@

Thursday, Oct 19:

La-La-La at Arkansas State 7pm/8pm ESPNU - blech.
Memphis at Houston 7pm/8pm ESPN - The last three games in this series have been decided by 4 points or less.

Friday, Oct 20:

Western Kentucky at Old Dominion 5pm/6pm CBSSN -yurg.
Marshall at Middle Tennessee 7pm/8pm ESPN2 -fooferall.
Air Force at Nevada 8:30/9:30 CBSSN - meh
Colorado State at New Mexico 9:15/10:15 ESPN2 - sleepy time.

Saturday, Oct 21:

SEC:

Idaho at Missouri 11am/noon SECN - Mizzou gunning for win #2!
Kentucky at Mississippi State 3pm/4pm SECN - This is a HUGE game for both programs who are trying to make a statement.
LSU at Ole Miss 6:15/7:15 ESPN - Can Coach O keep his Cajun VooDoo going when his back is NOT up against the wall?
Auburn at Arkansas 6:30/7:30 SECN - Both teams NEED this win for different reasons.
* Georgia, Florida, Texas A&M, South Carolina, Vandy have the week off.

ELIMINATION GAMES!

Oklahoma State at Texas 11am/noon ABC - Tejas is out of it but can be a spoiler. The Cowboys are a playoff longshot. Lose this one and they are definitely out.
Syracuse at Miami 2:30/3:30 ESPN - Can Syracuse get a second Chaos win in a row? Because the ‘Canes are ripe for a bring-back-to-Earth loss. Then again, so is the ‘Cuse.
Michigan at Penn State 6:30/7:30 ABC - Finally, the B1G season gets going.
Southern Cal at Notre Dame 6:30/7:30 NBC - Loser is OUT!

MORBID CURIOSITY:

Louisville at Florida State 11am/noon ESPN - Lost it’s sparkle, wouldn’t you say?

CAN’T SLEEP?

Wyoming at Boise 9:15/10:15 ESPN2
Fresno State at San Diego State 9:30/10:30 CBSSN
Colorado at Washington State 9:45/10:45 ESPN - Will Wazzu fall apart?

#ALABAMA

#TSIO

GAME 8 - Saturday, October 21, 2017

Tennessee at ALABAMA 2:30/3:30 CBS - Brad Nessler and Gary Danielson with Allie LaForce.
Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, AL

Alabama is an early 34 point favorite.

Peace and blessings to you all!

#RollTide!

Poll

Will a two-loss team get into the playoff?

This poll is closed

  • 4%
    Yes, there is too much parity for it not to happen.
    (20 votes)
  • 37%
    Maybe, get back to me in a couple of weeks.
    (188 votes)
  • 57%
    No, the cream will rise to the top.
    (287 votes)
495 votes total Vote Now